Research: Ancient Japan’s red flying pheasant may have been an aurora

Pheasants are traditional messengers from Heaven in Japanese folklore. So, what happened the day a giant red one appeared in the sky over that island nation? And, what was it? In the year 620 CE, a strange light, described in ancient texts as a red pheasant, appeared over the skies of Japan. This odd sight perplexed observers, some of whom recorded the event in stories which have since come down to our own time. “On December 30 in 620, a red sign appeared in heaven. The length was more than one jo (10 degrees). The shape was similar to a…
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Researchers want your voice to train coronavirus-detecting AI

Researchers behind an AI app that detects coronavirus in your voice have asked for volunteers to help by uploading audio of them coughing, breathing, and talking. Scientists from Cambridge University will use the data to develop machine learning algorithms that analyze a voice for symptoms of COVID-19. The COVID-19 Sounds App joins a growing list of tools using voice analysis to diagnose the coronavirus. The method remains unproven, but the team believes the sounds made by COVD-19 patients are so specific that they can reveal who has the disease. “Having spoken to doctors, one of the most common things they have…
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Your smartphone is covered in germs — and this portable sterilizer kills them all in minutes.

Harmful bacteria can live on your phone plenty long enough to get right up next to your face during your next call. That’s why having a line of defense like the intelliARMOR UV Shield Portable Smart Phone Sanitizer ($49.99, $10 off right now from TNW Deals) has never been more important.

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Your boobs are about to be disrupted — here’s why

It’s a private quest every woman has been on since her pre-teens. We’ve all been on various excursions to the mall, high street or local lingerie boutique in the hope that somewhere, out there, exists the mythical perfect bra. The problem is that traditional lingerie and sports clothing stores have long offered standard sizes, fabrics, designs, and capabilities, with little chance for customization. Industry giants like Victoria’s Secret are now seeing major criticism and declining sales numbers due to the demand for lingerie that isn’t just sexy but also designed for different shapes, activities, functions, and, most importantly, comfort. The…
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Huawei’s first OLED TV looks insane — but I’m not sure I want one

TVs are an interesting branch of technology. Despite the constant advancements and how much they’re used, TVs are rarely something I get genuinely excited about. It’s hard to know why: Maybe it’s how rarely I switch models, or possibly the lack of exciting features beyond more and brighter pixels. Well, it seems that Huawei‘s first OLED TV wants to change that. The Huawei Smart TV X65 — which has just had a whole load of details about it revealed — is jam-packed full of interesting features. The thing is, now they’re close to hitting the market, I’m not sure I want them.…
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Satoshi Nakaboto: ‘Bitcoin climbs above $7,000 for the first time since the coronavirus meltdown’

Our robot colleague Satoshi Nakaboto writes about Bitcoin every fucking day. Welcome to another edition of Bitcoin Today, where I, Satoshi Nakaboto, tell you what’s been going on with Bitcoin in the past 24 hours. As Faraday used to say: Let’s whip up a knowledge omelette! Bitcoin price We closed the day, April 06 2020, at a price of $7,271. That’s a decent 7.12 percent increase in 24 hours, or $483. It was the highest closing price in twenty-five days. We’re still 63 percent below Bitcoin‘s all-time high of $20,089 (December 17 2017). Bitcoin market cap Bitcoin’s market cap ended…
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Alternative electrode materials could unlock the secret to faster-charging EV batteries

Over the past 10 years or so, electric vehicle battery technology has evolved to the point where cars can be charged from zero to 80% in a matter of minutes. But a group of scientists in the US believe they have made a breakthrough that could lead to even faster-charging batteries. In highly simplistic terms, the researchers witnessed how electrically charged particles move around inside a battery. [Read: Scientists invent a faster and cheaper way to repurpose EV batteries] The scientists, led by the US Department of Energy‘s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, observed in real-time,…
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Scaling your ecommerce startup in the age of Amazon

Recently the New York Times reported how Amazon was flooding the market with new logos and brands. Essentially, Amazon finds cheap manufacturers to produce goods and matches them with sellers that will brand and sell the products on Amazon‘s marketplace. The strategy is to flood the market in a category, leverage the Prime listing, and move on. The products don’t cost much, but by selling such large quantities, participating businesses are making millions of dollars. This is one of the more recent trends in e-commerce that negatively affects businesses who care deeply about their brands, products, and customers. [Read: Focus on the client-side…
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Why the coronavirus lockdown makes you more vulnerable to phishing scams

As the world scrambles to deal with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, social distancing is the best solution we currently have at our disposal to contain the spread of the dangerous virus. For most organizations, companies, and government agencies, this means they must recommend or instruct their employees to work from home and avoid congregating at offices, where they risk becoming exposed to coronavirus contamination. But while remote working provides much-needed protection against COVID-19, it will also open a Pandora’s box of cybersecurity and privacy threats. Among the growing threats are phishing scams, social engineering attacks that trick their victims into downloading…
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